We’re More Than Just an Animal Shelter

Fully committed and dedicated to the protection of animals.

Humane Indiana is committed to animal health and well-being. By evoking our vision and employing our core values, we will achieve our ultimate goal: the humane treatment of animals.

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Our vision

To inspire compassion within the human spirit as the beacon of the animal welfare community; through the relentless pursuit of Humane Treatment for all.

Our Core Values


We live by our “Founders Principles” by ensuring that every action taken must be in the best interest and welfare of all animals. We will never forget how we began and where we need to go- these are the principles we hold true.


We know that the value of accountability is the willingness to take responsibility for one’s own actions. We never point the blame and we are always responsible for what we say and do!


We treat every living being with dignity and we hold ourselves to the highest of ethical standards. We always conduct our business with integrity, respect and professional behavior. Our goal is to always do what is Humane.


We value the relationships and partnerships that have helped our great organization flourish and we remain committed to cultivating those partnerships while developing new and long lasting ones. We realize that these successful relationships help define our organization and are the key factor in our overall success.


We aim to implement strategies which provide our organization with economic and cultural longevity. We work with enthusiasm and intellect, and are driven to surpass what has already been achieved. We are not afraid to stand alone, especially when it is the right thing to do.

Our History

Hammond Humane Society Established

In August, 1940 Miss Evelyn Sweitzer lived on Lyons Street, a few blocks from the back of the police station. It was a hot muggy summer, and Sweitzer could hear dogs howling and crying in a small, windowless trailer near the station. She investigated and found the inside of the trailer poorly ventilated and unbearably hot. Sweitzer learned that the dogs were supposed to go to the Hammond dog pound, but instead the dog catcher left them in the trailer with no water.

Horrified at what she found, Miss Sweitzer organized a group of women to fix the problem and ensure it wouldn’t happen again. They named themselves Hammond Humane Society (HHS).

The founding officers were:

  • Miss Evelyn Sweitzer, Founder
  • Mrs. Earl Buckman, President
  • Mrs. Fred Elliot, Vice President
  • Mrs. C.M. Towers, Secretary
  • Mrs. William Gelliman, Treasurer
  • Mrs. Evelyn Jacomb, Investigator

The group eventually closed the city pound and opened the HHS in December, 1941, taking over the city’s animal control services and sheltering.

Hammond Humane Society Becomes Humane Society Calumet Area

By the early 1970s, HHS expanded their animal intake and adoption services to outlying towns. With less city funding and fewer ties to Hammond, HHS legally changed their name to Humane Society Calumet Area (HSCA) in June, 1972, to better reflect serving a larger community.

Humane Society Calumet Area Moves to Munster

The original shelter, purchased for $412 in November, 1941, was a converted three-car garage on Columbia Avenue. Over time, additions were constructed to enlarge the building.

In the late 1990s it was apparent that the Columbia Avenue building could no longer be maintained. Bernard and Estelle Marcus donated a plot of land on 45th Street in Munster and the shelter opened in April, 2001.

Paws Resale Shoppe Opens

In 2004, HSCA opened Paws Resale Shoppe in a small storefront on Jewett Street in Highland. The store was a success and in fall, 2013 it moved to a more spacious location on Kennedy Avenue in Highland. By 2016, the store had raised over $1 million for the animals.

Estelle Marcus Animal Clinic Opens

Estelle Marcus was happy with the new shelter she helped build in Munster, but she knew that sheltering animals wasn’t enough. She wanted to prevent animals from entering shelters by providing high-quality, low-cost spay/neuter and vaccine services to families in need. In fall, 2010 construction began on the Estelle Marcus Animal Clinic (EMAC). Attached to the west side of the shelter EMAC also provides a separate intake center to reduce illness at the shelter. Since 2011, EMAC’s staff has performed thousands of surgeries there.

Moraine Ridge Wildlife Joins HSCA

Located on 26 acres in Valparaiso, Moraine Ridge Wildlife’s Rehabilitation and Education Centers (MRWRC) was founded in 1997 by wildlife rehabilitators and enthusiasts whose goal was to educate people to live harmoniously with wildlife, and to rehabilitate and release sick or injured wildlife.

After years of struggle and growth MRWRC became a subsidiary of HSCA. On July 1, 2014 MRWRC opened its doors to intake injured and orphaned native Indiana mammals, birds and reptiles, offering rescue, transport and rehabilitation services to Lake, Porter, LaPorte and surrounding counties. By the end of 2015, they had rescued over 1,000 wild animals.

Pets for Life Program Launched in Gary

In March, 2016 HSCA received grant funding to establish a Pets for Life (PFL) program in Gary. A program of the Humane Society of the U.S., PFL’s goal is to reduce local stray populations in under-served communities through targeted spay/neuter and vaccines services.

PFL helps animals by empowering the people who care for them. By offering resources and information with respect and understanding to populations untouched by animal service providers, the human-animal bond is elevated, quality of life is improved and overpopulation is reduced.